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Gorst Wins Derby One Pocket Title / Locks Up Master of the Table

Fedor Gorst (David Thomson – Medium Pool)

Diamond Derby City Classic XXIII, January 21-29, 2022

Caesars Southern Indiana, Elizabeth, IN

David Thomson

LIVE from the Accu-Stats TV Arena

Ladies and gentlemen, we have an undisputed 2022 Derby City Classic All-Around Champion.

21-year-old Muscovite Fedor Gorst just snatched the DCC One-Pocket Championship.

On Tuesday night, he apprehended the Banks title.

Gorst is now the youngest player in the 23-year history of the event to harness the opening two of the three  competitions thereby ensuring the All-Around Championship.

He also pocketed an additional $20,000 in bonus prize money.

For you DCC trivia buffs, Efren won the One-Pocket and Banks in 2007…when he was about eighty.

Some might say that in many of his One-Pocket bouts Gorst was the underdog. 

Certainly with Tony Chohan – whom he didn’t allow a game; 2017 DCC One Pocket Champ Billy Thorpe didn’t get a look at a shot; Darren Appleton did give Gorst his only loss tho,’ it was soon avenged in the semis.

The Finals sported a true One-Pocket specialist, Josh Roberts: potentially serious opposition.

Many would agree that Gorst has a much-improved understanding of the discipline’s defensive tactics.

His performance this week added one more plausible asset: He can get inside a player’s head:

There is a lot of heat on a straight-in shot when you know that the guy behind you can run 8-and-out from anywhere.

Yesterday, as Fedor Gorst had drawn the bye that resulted in Josh playing Darren, he knew he would have to compete in the next round of play: You cannot have back-to-back byes at the Derby.

So how do you redraw with 3 players, one of whom isn’t eligible to play? You simply redraw till Fedor isn’t the odd man out. The player who is the odd man out is automatically a finalist.

The draw welcomed Josh Roberts.

Fedor and Darren were in the semis again.

Darren had the best comeback of any game when down 6 balls to 1.

Appleton applied his never-say-die death grip by positioning balls up-table.

One ball at a time, his patience prevailed yet, securing that rack wasn’t enough.

Gorst, perhaps, inspired by his slip, permitted no further interruption while Darren earned a very respectable 3rd.

Roberts was resting in the wings.

Regarding last night’s “Mr. Under-the-Radar-No-More,” reference, we were just joshing with you:

A player is hardly under the radar when there are DVDs available of his  superlative performance in the 2017 Accu-Stats “Make It Happen” One-Pocket Invitational.

There, Roberts beat Efren 4-1 and Shane 4-0, in that tournament alone.

Now to the Accu-Stats TV Arena:

Within minutes, Gorst was up two games.

The intimidation had begun.

Another Gorst asset, he now has the knowledge and ability to smother his opponents. 

They can’t move the cueball. If they do, they have to take an intentional foul or risk selling out.

In the 3rd game, the only game he won, Josh dug deep and Fedor fell into a well-set, one-pocket trap.

As expected, Fedor erred which resulted in a lonely 1 near Roberts’ name on the scoreboard.

Josh, the consummate gentleman, was the first to acknowledge how well Fedor had competed.

“It was really impressive to see how quickly he had picked up the moving part of the game.”

The good news for Josh is that there is still plenty of 9-Ball.

Gorst’s requests for autographs, handshakes, high-fives, selfies, etal, allowed him to leave the arena beaming.

The look of fulfillment foretells that tonight will be a night he will treasure into eternity.

You can bet his first call will be to share his success with his sweetheart Kristina.


473 Battle on the Derby’s Most Brutal Battlefield.

As Matchroom has deemed the Derby’s 9-Ball Championship a Mosconi Cup point garnering tournament, 9-Ball has become this year’s most populated DCC event.

The ladies are well represented by Pia Filler, the 2021 American 14.1 finalist, and 2121 BEF Junior Champion April Larson.

Pia was going strong until she ran into Puerto Rican pro Alan Rolon.

Husband Joshua, always supportive, nodded, “Really good player: He once beat Earl 11-zero.”

In the first round, the aforementioned Joshua sent Appleton to buy-back.

Darren soon entered the Accu-Stats TV Arena for his next 9-Ball encounter with the 2013 DCC One-Pocket Champion, Corey Deuel.

Darren was soon ahead 5-1.

He blinked and was behind 7-6.

At hill-hill, Corey was breaking and skillfully completed the rack…and Darren’s visit to the Derby.

More irony: The “compliant-break” is enforced at the Derby: Three balls, minus any pocketed, must enter the kitchen.

Darren’s break was “non-compliant” resulting in Corey taking control of the table. This was costly for Appleton.

The irony is that Corey’s “soft break” was the reason for the compliant break’s initiation.

It was encouraging to see Appleton back in action. And playing so well.

He broke and ran 4 racks in that match. He was not intimidated by BIG Foot, and finished 3rd in One-Pocket.

That’s also the luck of the DCC occasionally cruel draw.

In Appleton’s first and second rounds of 9-Ball the algorithm spat out back-to-back Champions.

See you next year Darren.

Here’s a more striking encapsulation thru round 6: Mario He gave Gomez his first loss as did John Morra to Roland Garcia.

2021 World and International Open Champion Albin Ouschan branded Shuff. 

Albin was soon forced to buy-back by Francisco Sanchez Ruiz then later truncated by Konrad Juszczyszyn.

One-Pocket maestros Chohan and Joyner showed Chohan a little stronger in the world’s most popular rotation game.

And lastly, an upset: Marc Vidal Claramunt sent Sky flying to the buy-back booth to be later flown home by Mieszko Fortunski.

NOTE: Jayson Shaw, as runner-up in Bank Pool, tied for 4th in One-Pocket, and still undefeated in 9-Ball, is in the running for 2nd place in the All-Around.


The usual prospects, or should we say suspects; Al-Shaheen, Delawder, Hall, Shaw, Thorpe, and Woodward began the beguine at 50 bucks a ball.

The prize money is shared between first and second-place survivors.

 The Arena was standing room only. 

Matchroom’s Emily Frazer, sitting ringside, reputedly suggested that the Banks Ring Game was her favorite activity of the Derby.

Emily is not alone. 23,000 more enjoyed the FREE Accu-Stats’ stream on FaceBook: A special thanks to Upstate Al for his promo skills.

Delawder was the first to be slaughtered, quickly followed by Hall, then Al-Shaheen. With the ante rising quickly to $300 a ball, it takes a lot of bullets to stay alive.

Shaw soon fell leaving best buds Thorpe and Woodward to battle it out…again.

2022 was Billy’s year earning the top prize of $8000 to Woodward’s $4,000 for second.

Diamond Derby City Classic 9-BALL Championship: Wed. Jan 26 – Sat. 29.

Accu-Stats PPV OnDemand service

The cream of the 9-Ball division match-ups is presented via the Accu-Stats Pay-Per-View OnDemand, 4-camera HD production.

With PPV OnDemand, you choose when you view, no matter what you’re timezone.

2019 US Open Bank Pool Championship Matches Released on YouTube

CueSports International (CSI) is pleased to announce that recorded matches from the 2019 US Open Bank Pool Championship have been released on the CSI YouTube Channel. Thirteen (13) matches featuring some of the world's best bank pool players such as Shane Van Boening, John Morra, Billy Thorpe, Warren Kiamco and more can be viewed in their entirety – absolutely free!
The event was held May 24-26 at Griff's Billiards in Las Vegas. The format was double elimination with each match being a race to four (4) except the final match which was a race to five (5).
Match 1: John Morra (Canada) vs John Philips (USA)
Match 2: Billy Thorpe (USA) vs Mitch Ellerman (USA)
Match 3: Ian Costello (USA) vs Bill Thompson (USA)
Match 4: Warren Kiamco (Philippines) vs Marc Vidal Claramunt (USA)
Match 5: Chris Adams (USA) vs Michael Dunn (USA)
Match 6: John Morra (Canada) vs Warren Kiamco (Philippines)
Match 7: Shane Van Boening (USA) vs Billy Thorpe (USA)
Match 8: Mitch Ellerman (USA) vs John Philips (USA)
Match 9: Marc Vidal Claramunt (USA) vs Gary Lutman (USA)
Match 10 HOT SEAT: Billy Thorpe (USA) vs John Morra (Canada)
Match 11: Shane Van Boening (USA) vs Warren Kiamco (Philippines)
Match 12 SEMI-FINAL: Shane Van Boening (USA) vs John Morra (Canada)
Match 13 FINAL: Shane Van Boening (USA) vs Billy Thorpe (USA)
Please SUBSCRIBE to the CSI YouTube Channel to be notified whenever we upload new content.
CueSports International (CSI) is an international pool league and event leader and is currently comprised of three divisions: CSI leagues, CSI events and CSI media. CSI leagues manages the BCA Pool League and USA Pool League, CSI events produces numerous amateur and professional events around the globe and CSI media creates live streaming and digital content. Through its vision and strategic alliances, CSI is “shaping the future of pool.”  For more information about CSI or any of its divisions, visit or find CueSports International on Facebook, YouTube, Instagram and Twitter.

Draw Made For US Open 9-Ball Championship

The draw for the 43rd US Open 9-Ball Championship has been made, with Jayson Shaw to begin his defense against Marcus Weston at Mandalay Bay Resort, Las Vegas on Sunday, April 21.
The draw was seeded with a golf-style category system adopted, which took in rankings from across the pool world including WPA World Ranking, BCA Standings and Fargo Rating. As defending champion Shaw was seeded No.1, while five-time US Open champion Shane Van Boening is seeded second as the highest ranked American player.
Broadcast details for the 2019 US Open 9-Ball Championship will be announced shortly. Live rack-by-rack scoring will be available throughout the event at thanks to Matchroom Multi Sport’s partnership with CueScore.
The draw, brackets and match schedule can be viewed now at
Note: Should any players featured in the draw not participate in the event, they will be replaced directly by the first player on the event waiting list to accept a spot in the tournament, irrespective of where the new player would have featured in any seeding category.
All matches at the US Open 9-Ball Championship takes place April 21-26 at Mandalay Bay Resort, Las Vegas. Matches are race to 11, winner breaks, except the final which is race to 13. The draw and match schedule for the first stage of the tournament is available now at
Tickets for the 43rd US Open 9-Ball Championship are still available at from as little as $10 with VIP packages also available for the final three days of the tournament.
The tournament will be split into two stages with the full field playing double elimination down to the final 16 from Sunday April 21st until Tuesday April 23rd across multiple tables. From Wednesday April 24th until Friday April 26th the final 16 players will play straight knockout in the TV Arena in front of a global television audience.
Jayson Shaw vs. Marcus Westen
Tom Staveley vs.Jason Williams
Hunter Lombardo vs. Kosuke Tojo
Radwan Jameel R Sorouji vs. Tommy Tokoph
Naoyuki Oi vs. Marco Vignola
Alex Montpellier vs. Jason Klatt
Martin Daigle vs. Patrick Flemming
Angelo Salzano vs. Corey Deuel
Petri Makkonen vs. Marcel Price
Peter Busarac vs. Amar Kang
Franklin Hernandez vs. Ellis Brown
Paul Jaurez vs. Justin Bergman
James Aranas vs. Roderick Malone
Masato Yoshioka vs. Erik Hjorleifson
Stephen Folan vs. Jochen Kluge
Jon Demet vs. Toru Kurabayashi
Fedor Gorst vs. Gary Onomura
Stanley Walton vs. Paul Duell
Omar Al-Shaheen vs. David Dimmitt
Amer Al-Darbani vs. Mateusz Sniegoki
Dali Lin vs. Fabio Rizzi
Jason Hitzfeld vs. Jeremy Jones
Philipp Stojanovic vs. Steve Van Ness
Dalibor Nikolin vs. Francisco Sanchez Ruiz
(Kevin) Cheng Yu Hsuan vs. Christopher Lawson
Mohammed Ali N Al Eid vs. Ivo Aarts
Rodney Morris vs. Ken Kuwana
Deomark Alpajora vs. Radoslaw Babica
Marc Bijsterbosch vs. Ritchie Ogawa
Gary Urinoski vs. Danny Olson
Toan Nguyen vs. Bahram Lofty
Giuseppe Iacobucci vs. Ko Pin-Yi
Carlo Biado vs. Fahad Salem N Alharbi
Kenichi Uchigaki vs. Tyler Fleshman
Matt Edwards vs. Marco Penta
Hideaki Arita vs. Maksim Dudanets
Jeff De Luna vs. Torsten Schmitt
Chris Robinson vs. Rob Hart
Marco Teutscher vs. Raymund Faraon
Yip Kin Ling Leo vs. Dennis Orcollo
David Alcaide vs. Jorg Kellner
Blake Baker vs. Mitch Ellerman
Siming Chen vs. Mohamed Baabad
Jamal Oussi vs. Hoang Duong Quoc
Liu Haitao vs. Patrick Griess
Mike Stalk vs. John Schmidt
Justin Espinosa vs. Nguyen Phuc Long
Koh Yong Lee Randolph vs. Eklent Kaci
Ko Ping-Chung vs. Sami Koylu
Cole Gibbons vs. Brian Sanders
Brandon Shuff vs. Michael Yednak
Robert Hewings vs. Michael Dechaine
Konrad Juszczyszyn vs. John Chapman
Luis Guerrero vs. Hayato Hijikata
Kenny Loftis vs. Corey Harper
Michael Hutcheson vs. Thorsten Hohmann
Johnny Archer vs. Kurt Kobayashi
Konrad Piekarski vs. Roberto Gomez
Jani Siekkinen vs. Damian Pongpanik
Bora Anar vs. Alex Pagulayan
Sangin Pehlivanovic vs. Bryan Farah
Ching-Shun Yang vs. Milos Verkic
Kings Santy vs. Michael Delawder
Jason McClain vs. Alexander Kazakis
Joshua Filler vs. Matt Krah
Thomas Welle vs. David Anderson
Jalal Yousef vs. Henrik Larsson
Tom Griffith vs. Roman Hybler
Jeffery Ignacio vs. Lefteris Georgiou
James Davee vs. Kostas Koukiadakis
Hsu Kai-Lun vs. Adam King
Ralph Eckert vs. Mika Immonen
Wu Kun Lin vs. Kuo Szu-Ting
Kang Lee vs. Ernesto Dominguez
Darren Appleton vs. Terry Spalding
Patrick Holtz vs. Richard Halliday
Tyler Styer vs. Kelii Chuberko
Che-Wei Fu vs. Josh Roberts
John Barton vs. Zachary Bos
Johann Dominik Hiber vs. Wu Jiaqing
Dennis Grabe vs. Lee Heuwagen
Jeffrey Jimenez vs. Ronald Regli
Liu Ri Teng vs. Gwyn Spooner
Arnar Peterson vs. Chang Yu-Lung
Wang Can vs. Dejan Sipkovski
Jonathan Mcdowell Pakieto vs. Francisco Bustamante
Max Eberle vs. Robert Goddard
Florida Pro Tour vs. Aloysius Yapp
Skyler Woodward vs. Luu Minh Phuc
Stephen Holem vs. Imran Majid
Jason Theron vs. Katsuyuki Yamamoto
Stan Tourangeau vs. Ruslan Chinakov
Wojciech Szewczyk vs. Renato Camantigue
James Adams vs. Marek Kudlik
Brendan Ng vs. Paddy McLoughlin
Brian Parks vs. Niels Feijen
Chang Jung-Lin vs. Roland Stock
John Moody Sr vs. Adam Lilley
Nick Malaj vs. Dimitri Jungo
Francesco Candela vs. Tomasz Kaplan
Mario He vs. Michael Pruitt
Cheng-Chieh Liu vs. Tommy Kennedy
Vilmos Foldes vs. Marc Vidal Claramunt
Max K Reyes vs. Billy Thorpe
Dang Jin Hu vs. Ben Crawley
Jamie White vs. Tony Chohan
Gabe Owen vs. Gary Lutman
Elliot Sanderson vs. Robbie Capito
Warren Kiamco vs. Mark Showalter
Brendon Bektashi vs. Hsu Jui-An
Patrick Mannillo vs. Melinda Huang
Ryo Yokawa vs. Chris Melling
Ralf Souquet vs. Molrudee Kasemchaiyanan
Seiji Kuwajima vs. Simon Pickering
Earl Strickland vs. Pedro Botta
Steve Lingelbach vs. Dennis Hatch
Donny Mills vs. Eugene Villena
Mark Foster vs. Shaun Wilkie
Kim Laaksonen vs. Chris Alexander
Steven Lingafelter vs. Albin Ouschan
John Morra vs. Marco Spitzky
Adam Mscisz vs. Marlon Manalo
Alejandro Carvajal vs. Dustin Dixon
Philipps Yee vs. Johann Chua
Mieszko Fortunksi vs. Chris McDaniel
Robby Foldvari vs. Yukio Akagariyama
Manny Perez vs. Nicolas Charette
Abdullah Saeed O Alshammari vs. Shane van Boening

The Rocket goes undefeated to take $12,000-added Chinook Winds 10-Ball Open

Rodney Morris

Rodney "The Rocket" Morris, who's been making a lot of payout noise on the Mezz West Tour this year (three wins, and four other payout finishes) and won the 8th Annual Wyoming Open Masters 10-Ball in March, traveled to Lincoln City, Oregon for the 3rd Annual Chinook Winds Open 10-Ball Championships. He went undefeated through the field of 118, on-hand for the $12,000-added Open portion of the event, hosted by the Chinook Winds Casino and Resort, in Lincoln City (a Ladies tournament drew 30 entrants; separate story). 
Morris won four matches with an aggregate score of 28-7 and along with seven others, advanced out of a preliminary A bracket. Carlo Biado, his ultimate finals opponent, came out of the winners' side of the B bracket. 
Morris ran into some stiff competition in the final winners' side bracket of eight players, completing his undefeated run with an aggregate score over his last four games of 28-19. After defeating Danny Gokhul 7-5, he ran into a determined Warren Kiamco, who put up a double hill fight in one of the winners' side semifinals. Stan Tourangeau defeated Miguel Morfin 7-5 in the other one. Morris claimed the hot seat 7-5 over Tourangeau and waited on the return of Biado.
Biado, in the meantime, who'd been on the winners' side of the final bracket, had been sent to the loss side by Tournageau 7-3. He defeated Jamie Bruce 7-5 and survived a double hill battle against Marc Vidal Claramunt to draw Kiamco. Morfin picked up Gokhul, who, after his loss to Morris on the winners' side, had defeated Darrold Crain 7-4 and survived his own double hill fight against Randy Baker.
Biado downed Kiamco 7-4, as Gokhul got through his second straight double hill fight, over Morfin. Biado picked up the pace a little with a shutout over Gokhul in the quarterfinals, and gave up only a single rack to Tournageau in the semifinals. Morris completed his undefeated run with a 7-3 win over Biado in the finals. 
The Open and Ladies events were streamed live throughout the weekend by On the Rail TV. 

Heros in Dangerous Water at US Open 10-Ball

The US Open 10-Ball Championship in Las Vegas is underway and the normally predictable early rounds have popped some well-known balloons with upsets. Diego Simon Parra struck down Darren Appleton 9-6, perhaps a bit of letdown on Appleton’s part after scoring second place in the One-Hole. Mike Davis took on the machine and won by besting Oliver Ortmann 9-7. Raj Hundal fell from the hill when Manny Chau took him off 9-8. Rain Chiang (don’t worry. I have never heard some of these names, either.) sent Corey Deuel to the left 9-7 and Sal Butera shocked none other than Johnny Archer 9-7 to send him down the long road as well.

Other matches of note included Matt Krah besting Rodney Morris 9-8. Krah had to fade Shane Van Boening last night at 11 PM but we do not have that result as yet. Francisco Bustamante is in stroke. He beat Thorsten Hohmann 9-5. David Alcaide ruined the opener for Shawn Putnam as Shawn fell to him 9-6. Max Eberle beat expectant father Marc Vidal 9-7 and Robb Saez Beat up Donny Mills 9-7. Charlie Bryant, making a return to pro pool after a layoff, snapped the dragon’s tail by winning over Charlie WIlliams 9-3. John Morra ran into a very tough first match and dropped the ball 9-6 when Mika Immonen kept putting money balls away.

AZBilliards will keep you up-to-date on all the results from Vegas and we would like to thank Lucasi Hybrid Cues and the TAP league system for making our coverage possible.

Vegas Heats Up as the 36th BCAPL National Championship Rolls into Town

Mitch Ellerman (Photo courtesy of Fred Stoll)

The 36th BCAPL National Championships rolled into the Riviera Hotel and Casino Wednesday, May 10th. Approximately 7,000 players congregate each year in Las Vegas to compete in the event known as “The Greatest Pool Tournament in the World.”

Produced by CueSports International (CSI) and taking place over 11 days, the group of events include; 23 BCA Pool League (BCAPL) divisions, three USA Pool League (USAPL) divisions and two professional tournaments (the 13th US Open One Pocket Championship and the 4th US Open 10-Ball Championship).

The BCAPL competition began with three 9-Ball singles events: the Men’s Open 9-Ball Singles, the Women’s Open 9-Ball Singles and the 9-Ball Challenge.

The Men’s Open 9-Ball saw a full field of 256 players compete for over $15,000 in prize money. Daniel McKenney (league #1073) from Texas beat out Matt Beckwith (league #23) from Wisconsin for the $2,100 first place check.

The Women’s Open 9-Ball Singles had 83 competitors. Jennifer Polik (league #1152 and 719) from Michigan reigned as the winner beating Valerie Franiel (league #497) from Alberta, Canada and taking home the $900 first place prize. Both 9-Ball Open events followed a single elimination best two out of three sets per match and are only for open rated BCAPL league players and CSI player members known to be open level.

The 9-Ball Challenge welcomes both league and CSI player members of all ratings. The more traditional double elimination race to 7 format event had 147 entrants. Known to attract a roster of seasoned players, this year’s champion was Arizona top gun Mitch Ellerman. Also a former Jay Swanson Memorial winner, Ellerman pocketed $2,600 and only lost a total of 16 games out of 9 matches beating out Marc Vidal-Claramunt, Nick Malaj, Melissa Little, Ramesh Gokhul, Phil Burford, Heath Bartley and Chad Lovelace.

As the 9-Ball Singles competition concluded, the Scotch events began with the Open Scotch Doubles kicking off May 11th at 7 pm. This year a new Advanced Scotch Doubles division was added and it and the Master Scotch Doubles started Friday, May 12th. All Scotch Doubles divisions will conclude Tuesday, May 15th.

Saturday saw the start of the highly competitive BCAPL Singles 8-Ball divisions. There are 11 total divisions and 2,295 entrants in the 8-Ball singles competition. The Grand Master 8-Ball Singles will conclude today and the other 8-Ball singles divisions will conclude Tuesday.

To view online all of the brackets for the 36th BCAPL National Championships, the 2nd USAPL National Championships, the 13th US Open One Pocket Championship and the 4th US Open 10-Ball Championship visit the CueSports Tournament System at You may search a player or team by name or can view by division or tournament.

For more information about the BCAPL visit

CueSports International (CSI) is dedicated to creating more choices for all players. In the past seven years CSI has directly paid out approximately Seven Million Dollars to players. CSI is the parent company of the BCA Pool League and the USA Pool League. CSI also produces independent events such as the US Bar Table Championships, the Jay Swanson Memorial, the US Open One Pocket Championship and the US Open 10-Ball Championship. Visit, and for more information about CSI and its divisions.

CSI leads the billiard industry in the development of technology. For more information on the state-of-the-art software systems for league and tournament management visit and

5th Annual Wyoming Open Draws Top Names: Poison Cues & Andy Cloth Sponsors

2011 Champion Charlie Williams (File photo courtesy of Mike Fieldhammer)

Saratoga, Wyoming-  Players from the west and all around the US will return to Saratoga once more for the 5th Annual Wyoming Open. The event is renown to be the biggest and best pool event in the state drawing over a 150 players in different divisions. From beginner, intermediate, and even pro/open level tournaments will all be available March 30- April 1. The event kicks in $8000 and every year pays out $25,000 in total cash prizes. This year a ladies event is also added to give even more variety and opportunities to players. The event is sponsored by Poison Cues by Predator and Asia’s #1 cloth Andy Cloth will be the official cloth used during the event.

“The Wyoming Open has become the most prestigious and biggest title to win in the state, and probably in all the Rocky Mountain states. We are honored to draw local, regional and international stars to our humble town of Saratoga. We plan on making this bigger and better each year” says EJ Glode , promoter of the Wyoming Open.

Notable names such as Glenn Atwell, Mark Haddad, Marc Vidal have attended the event in past years. Lady players such as WPBA pro Melissa Herndon and known amateur Samm Diep have also attended. This year will include more names such as California young gun Amar ‘AK47″ Kang and heavy hitters Charlie Williams, Rodney Morris, and Raj Hundal .

“This is a great one! I gotta get some practice for the best tourney in Wyoming!”, says Tenille Whitten from Utah, a frequent supporter of the event that participates in the classic and ladies divisions.

“I’m excited to be going to this years Wyoming Open. What EJ has done for pool there is amazing. Anyone that has never been, I would definitely recommend going. From the hospitality to the great pool to the great atmosphere. EJ is great friend and a wonderful promoter for pool. If the pool world had an EJ in every city, we’d have pool bigger than golf or tennis”, said Rodney Morris, a past champion of the event and returning again for his fourth appearance in Saratoga.

Past champions of the event include some stellar names :

2008 Damian Pongpanik
2009 Shane Van Boening
2010 Rodney Morris
2011 Charlie Williams

Last year’s top 4 finisher Raj Hundal will be coming from England and adds, “It’s a great event that grows every year in every way, the field gets bigger and stronger. The hospitality is unrivalled as all the locals love pool and it’s stars that come out for this annual event. The promoter and organiser E.J Glode is a close personal friend of mine as well as a good friend of the sport, I wish there was more people like him in our industry.”

“Nowadays I have an extremely busy schedule with producing events,  so I’ve turned down invites to major events including a few World Championships. But I had such an awesome time last year that I couldn’t wait to go back. Anyone who hasn’t been, it’s definitely worth it to go at least once. I’m sure you will want to come back. The town, the people, the food and pool are terrific!”, said Charlie Williams from Florida, defending Wyoming Open Champion and promoter for Dragon Promotions.

The event is majorly supported by the town’s own businesses which include : Hotel Wolf, Duke’s Bar & Grill, Valley Foods, Riviera Lodge, Carbon County, and Shively Hardware.

For more info or to play in the Wyoming Open contact EJ Glode or 307-329-8924

Pettinger and Ellis: Last Men Standing at Felt 9-Ball Knock Out

Andrew “ATM” Pettinger, Jay Hlavachek, Matt Driste and Tony Piazza

The inaugural event of the 2012 Felt Pool Tournament Series was a successful one. On January 21-22, Felt Billiards of Englewood, Colorado hosted the 9-Ball Knock Out, a big table 9-ball tournament with two events, an open two-day main event that started Saturday morning and an A’s & Down event that began Sunday morning. As a fun format, players received the option to “BUY A BYE.” At the time of sign up, the first 16 open players and the first 8 amateur players could purchase a guaranteed bye in the second round which also guaranteed they would not play their first match before noon.

The main event kicked off Saturday morning with a 32-player field and the A’s & Down filled with a full 24-player field with 8 byes.  A handful of A players opted to also try their luck on Saturday. For Mike Ellis of Aurora, that extra table time on Saturday paid off as he cruised through the field on Sunday.

Saturday drew an elite field of players, spanning three different states. Top player Mike Dudack from Casper, Wyoming came to try his luck, along with women’s professional player Anna Kostanian and husband Peter Sucre of Albuquerque, New Mexico. Players flocked from the North and South. Jim Calderon came from Pueblo, as well as Colorado Springs road partners Ruben Silva and Frank Ubaniak. Fans were also treated to appearances by touring professionals Melissa Little “The Viper” and Laura Smith.

The rail was jam packed all weekend with savvy spectators who demanded a good show and were not disappointed. Along with the top-notch live pool, fans and players were entertained between matches with the broadcast of the live streaming from the 14th Annual Derby City Classic that was shown on the big screen in the dining area. This professional event kept away local top players, Mark Haddad and recent transplant Marc Vidal.

Both main event and Sunday event went smoothly, even accommodating for the regular Sunday afternoon 10-ball tournament which started a couple hours late. All three finals wrapped up by Sunday evening. In the main event, it was a race-to-seven, winner-break format, using the Magic Ball Racks. After escaping a couple close calls from James Winter and Matt Driste, Andrew Pettenger “ATM” went undefeated for all the marbles. Driste, the dark horse who’s been out of the scene until recently, came out like gang-busters, defeating Kostanian 7-0, as well as victories over Jay Hlavachek and Greg Romero before facing “ATM” for the a-side finals.

In the end, Hlavachek came back through the b-side but was no match for Piazza who would claim that match 7-0 and advance to the semi-finals. Piazza also escaped a close call earlier against Urbaniak. After defeating Hlavachek, he also took out Driste but would find himself no match for Pettenger. In the final rack, Pettenger was ahead 6-5 and opted to play a safety on the 8 ball which left Piazza a safety in return. Pettenger was now faced with a long, touchy 8 ball. After much deliberation, he fired at it, missing the pocket but banking it two rails into the opposite pocket leaving himself straight in on the 9 ball and that was all she wrote.

As the main event brought many close matches, the A’s & Down saw quite a few lop-sided ones. Ellis bought himself a first round head start but didn’t really need it. Of his three rounds after that, he only gave up three games and went undefeated until Joe Conway came along. When they first met, Ellis took that match 4-0. Conway would make his way back for a rematch. In the first round of the finals, Conway returned the favor with 4-0 of his own. Keeping with the theme, Ellis prevailed in the second set 3-0 for the title.

Dustin Yeager of Aurora and Winfield Hong of Centennial both also made a splash on Sunday with their third and fourth place finishes. Yeager was a last minute wild card when a player dropped out the day before. The A’s & Down field was filled by Thursday night. 

Felt proudly added $700 between the two events and will continue to add even more money to upcoming events. For more information about the 2012 Tournament Series, visit Felt Billiards is located at 101 West Floyd Avenue in Englewood, Colorado and is home to the best weekly tournaments, nightly food and drink specials, and a home away from home for players and spectators alike. Check out for more information and a complete calendar of events.

Special thanks go to our sponsors for this event: Rocky Mountain USA Pool League (, Access Printing in Englewood (, and the Magic Ball Rack courtesy of CueSports International ( Special recognition also goes to Don Posri and Sean Thamrongpradith for their thankless hard work all weekend. Additional sponsorship opportunities are available for the tournament series. Contact Felt for more information.

Derby City Day Eight

Johnny Archer

The finals days of the 14th Annual Derby City Classic ae underway. After seven complete days of play, we are into round four of the 9-ball, the semi-finals of the Fatboy 10-ball Challenge and the semi-finals of the 14.1 Challenge.

The 9-ball division started with 83 players in round four and we are starting to see some marquee names eliminated. Johnny Archer handed Rodney Morris his second loss, Steve Hickman upset Charlie Bryant, Benny Conway eliminated Rafael Martinez and Jesse Engel handed Amar Kang his first loss.  Top players now eliminated from the 9-ball division include Morris, Bobby Hunter, Dan Louie, Mark Tadd, Marc Vidal, Brandon Shuff, Earl Strickland, Huidji See and both Louis and Josh Ulrich. We expect at least two more rounds of 9-ball play tonight.

The Fatboy 10-Ball tournament is down to three players with Stevie Moore booking his place in the finals with a 15-12 win over Alex Pagulayan on the Accu-Stats TV table. Pagulayan led the match early, but Moore came back to take control and capture the win. Moore will play either John Morra or Francisco Bustamante, who will play each other later today.

The 14.1 Challenge is also down to three players with Alex Pagulayan waiting for the winner of Darren Appleton and Ralf Souquet. Pagulayan eliminated John Schmidt in convincing fashion on Friday.

Both the finals of the 10-Ball event and the 14.1 event will take place on Saturday.

Derby City Day Four

Francisco Bustamante

The One Pocket event at Derby City began Monday and there are a few surprises to report. Sharp-shooting Mike Dechaine was bested by Lance Cowles. Marc Vidal fell to Nicholas Hickerson and Dee Adkins went down under the weight of Justin Richardson. But the story thus far is not upsets, it is the number of players who are at the top of their game who ran into very tough matches early in the event.

Warren Kiamco had to fade Mark Tadd and won. Rob Saez defeated John Schmidt (who is running centuries at 14.1 every day). Ralf Souquet really hit a tough one but he pulled through against Francisco Bustamante. Efren Reyes got past Shannon Daulton and Rodney Morris survived his encounter with Stevie Moore. Huidje See beat Evgeny Stalev and Mike Dechaine handled Chris Szuter. Niels Feijen got past Alex Pagulayan in the first round as did Francisco Bustamante over Dennis Orcullo. These top-gun matchups will get more and more frequent as the chaff falls out of play.

The Fatboy Challenge Ten Ball competition kicks off at midnight on Tuesday night. What a field! Here are the first round matchups:

1) Huidje See V Mike Dechaine
2) Shane Van Boening V Francisco Bustamante
3) Lee Van Corteza V John Morra
4) Brandon  Shuff V Dennis Orcullo
5) Stevie Moore V Ralf Souquet
6) Warren Kiamco V Johnny Archer
7) Darren Appleton V Rodney Morris
8) Alex Pagulayan V Mika Immonen

We will give you the results of this competition on Wednesday. Full results on all competitions may be found at